Email: rachelkramerbussel at


Lusty Lady

Watch my first and favorite book trailer for Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica. Get Spanked in print and ebook

Monday, January 28, 2013

Sex toys, condo sex and marijuana

All this and more in this week's sex diary. I edit the weekly series and am always looking for new diarists, in NYC and not in NYC, so if you're interested (yes, it pays), email me at sexdiaries at and tell me a little about you and why you want to be diarist, as well as your age, gender, location, occupation, sexual orientation and relationship status and I'll send you more information. Feel free to pass this on. Thanks!

I wish I were traveling, but I also love New York truly, madly, deeply

I broke my own rule of this being the year of positivity online. Oops and apologies. I'm sure this week and month will soon be gone and with them all their attendant annoyances. And I'm planning trips! Learned last year I have to keep mum about where I'm going until the trip is over since hotels are not so great about keeping their guests' identities a secret (might be time to up my travel game and have a nom de travel, which feels ridiculous and hilarious and pretentious but better to be safe than sorry). Also, I'm planning to take a travel writing class, which I hope will pay off, but even if it doesn't, it will be something new, which I desperately need. Every day at noon this week, JetBlue is announcing special fares from New York, and they are also giving all TrueBlue members 5,000 bonus points if you take 3 round trips within 2013. I probably would have taken that many anyway, but it's added incentive. For travel tips, check out Nomadic Matt and Johnny Jet. I cannot hop on a plane today, though I'd love it if my life were set up so I could, but I will be soon. And I'll get my culture fix this week with Not By Bread Alone at NYU and a taping of Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell. I'm doing my best to take full advantage of this gorgeous, busy, amazing city while I can.

No stories available

Last night, before trying to sleep, when there were no more Words with Friends games waiting for me, I was wasting time on the site that's best for it, Facebook. I was looking at kid photos of someone I don't even know, because that's what I do when it's 1 in the morning, and I kept clicking and clicking and eventually I got these three words: "No stories available." It was such a perfect metaphor for how I've been feeling, about my life, about writing, about everything. There's been so much inertia that I can't seem to even muster up the courage to call the doctor I think will give me some Vyvanse and get me back to creating again.

But then I fell into a fitful sleep and woke up at 3 and wondered if there would be TEDxBroadway tickets available (that would be no, I later found out) and decided I'd try to stay up. And lo and behold, there was a story idea, as I lay in the dark, rearranging my pillows, and the framework of that story and the title fell into place almost magically. I took a real scenario of someone I know and tweaked it to my needs and now my job is to write it and put it in my short story collection. That felt like such a huge gift, and reminded me that all the stories I tell myself about how horrible a person I am, how irresponsible, stupid, idiotic, etc., are just that: stories. Sometimes I believe them so wholeheartedly I just want to lie in bed for weeks or months. The idea of getting on a plane or a train or in a care or even walking a block seems like way too much for me to deal with. The monumental task of getting my life from New York to my new home makes me want to torch everything, the sentimental with the shlock, the worthless with the precious. I have four months but it feels like four hours. It also feels like the more I do, the more there is to do, but what/s' the alternative? I know how freeing it will be to escape the mess, literal and figurative, but I also know it's one of those has to get worse before it gets better situations. More accurately, it's been worse, the worst, for many years, and I've had to ignore it to do anything other than be a female Collyer brother. Now I'm facing all of it, and myself, and it's hard to realize how much I haven't done, all the books I bought and didn't read, all the clothes I never wore, all the things I once wanted to do and didn't. But I don't want the big dreams I have to be things I never do, just because I was scared or daunted or didn't know the outcome ahead of time.

That's how writing feels a lot of the time, like why bother starting? Maybe it'll be just like TEDxBroadway where I didn't buy my ticket fast enough and missed out. But then I remember that even though I'm inside on this snowy day, cozy with coffee, not with theater folks, I have plenty of stories to tell, and plenty to be grateful for. It hasn't felt like I do for a while now, but I'm getting there, slowly. Maybe I don't have a story available every day, but I think if I dig deep enough, I'll find that they are there, they just aren't always pretty or nice. I may look like the monstrous person I sometimes am, because shiny perfect I'm awesome stories are deadly dull and nobody wants to buy them, or read them, including me. I'm hoping this month ends on a high note, because it certainly didn't start that way. January is not my favorite month, but even last January was full of extreme highs and extreme lows, and I made it through it. So today as much as it goes against my natural inclination, I'm going to focus on what's right in front of me, where I am, rather than where I'm not, knowing that if I don't like where or who I am, it's my job, and mine alone, to change it.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Honk if you like bisexual erotica

And by "honk" I mean click "like" on Amazon, and please know I'm going to probably get the copy changed over there, though it kindof amuses me: "Rachel Kramer Bussel is a card-carrying bisexual. She writes about it, talks about it, blogs about it and probably tweets, too. She is in a great relationship with a BOYFRIEND but once you go bi you never to back. Bisexuality is not about keeping your options open, it is about looking at the world and seeing a lot more sexy." When I'm done posting Serving Him excerpts, I'll start posting Twice the Pleasure excerpts. I hope this one does well because I'd love to edit another book of bisexual erotica! I'll be doing some sort of pre-order special with this one too, perhaps around Valentine's Day, so stay tuned!

Table of Contents:

Introduction: Hot Bi Babes: A Both/And Approach to Bisexuality

1 Percent Adaptable Nicole Wolfe

The Wife Kay Jaybee

Operetta Jean Roberta

Lifeline Emerald

Goa Dena Hankins

The Robber Girl Lori Selke

The Adulterers Penelope Friday

Sunset Logan Belle

Break Cheryl B.

In the Mirror Valerie Alexander

Glitter in the Gutter Giselle Renarde

Seduction Dance Dorothy Freed

A Little Fun Rachel Kramer Bussel

Trinity Jordana Winters

Meeting at the Hole in the Wall Aimee Pearl

The State Tahira Iqbal

Strange Status Quo Salome Wilde

Walking the Walk Shanna Germain

ReGretable Circumstances Lane

Right-Red Flagging Sinclair Sexsmith

Page of Wands Cheyenne Blue

What I Want, What I Need Jacqueline Applebee

Introduction: Hot Bi Babes: A Both/And Approach to Bisexuality

Woody Allen once famously said, “Bisexuality immediately doubles your chances for a date on Saturday night.” As a bisexual woman, I can attest that this is not necessarily true. Bisexuality is more than just a math equation and cannot be so easily categorized or summarized. Identifying as bi, or being attracted to or engaging in sex with a variety of genders, or whatever version of something approximating those states of being , is the theme of this anthology, and in many ways, the term is actually a lot broader than that dual opportunity. This is not a book about choosing either/or, male or female, or simply one of each. It’s not about narrowing gender down to one size fits all, but about expanding our options, to a both/and approach to how we view and cultivate our sexuality. It’s a welcoming, inclusive definition that welcomes all comers—pun fully intended.

I wanted this book, while fictional and focused on the erotic aspects of bisexual women’s lives, to explore as wide a swatch of “bisexual” as possible. That means that some of the best stories here don’t mention the word bisexual at all; they don’t have to, because their bi angle, their queerness, is embedded—and bedded—in the story. The characters are living it, rather than identifying with it; the sexual exploration and attraction, the experience and movement, are more important than what anyone wants to call it.

The large majority of the submissions I received for this book were about women having sex with women, which makes sense in the context of a culture that still privileges heterosexual identity over any other kind. Even in an era of so-called lesbian and bisexual chic, there’s still plenty of discomfort with the fluidity with which many women view their sexuality. Shifting away from a purely heterosexual mindset forces women to grapple with the ways we differ from mainstream society, even one that is becoming much more open and knowledgeable about the varieties of queer life. The first time we dare to dip our toes—or other body parts—into the world of sex with other women is often momentous. Many of us will find the character of Laura, in Nicole Wolfe’s opening story, “1 Percent Adaptable,” familiar. Laura at first protests Marie’s advances, warning her that she’s not gay, not bi, until she listens to her body and follows its yearnings. “Laura was shocked that the kiss had surprised her, considering what had just happened between her legs. She let her lips caress Marie’s. She dared to let her tongue out to play. She risked letting her hands tickle Marie’s hips and backside,” Wolfe writes.

But I didn’t want this to simply be a first-time bi-curious tentative collection, but a robust one exploring the intimacy of life as a woman interested in men and women. That’s why I wanted stories that asked questions like the ones in Jacqueline Applebee’s closing tale, “What I Want, What I Need:” “I’d been out as a lesbian since I was twenty-three. Why was I suddenly spending time with a straight man? Why was I enjoying it so much? Had I really been a lesbian at all, or had I been lying to myself for the past twenty years?”

There are girlfriends and wives, husbands and boyfriends, first dates, threesomes and much more here. There’s daring and adventure, women taking risks by stepping outside their comfort zones, whether it’s by surrendering to a bodyguard in “The State,” by Tahira Iqbal, or confronting “The Wife” of a male lover in Kay Jaybee’s story, only to be confronted right back. The women you’ll read about are attracted to strong women like “The Robber Girl” in Lori Selke’s story, and men who surprise them with their sensitivity, as in my story, “A Little Fun.”

There’s also kink, if that’s what you’re looking for. In Cheryl B.’s “The Break,” spanking becomes a way for two exes to reconnect and revive the passion between them, while Sinclair Sexsmith takes us inside a gay bar and then home with a boy her protagonist has met there, one who may or may not know her true gender, in “Right-Red Flagging.” The protagonist of “Seduction Dance” is under the watchful eye of her master when she finds a new female plaything for her to command and seduce. Gender is played with, fucked with, and grappled with as well in Giselle Renarde’s “Glitter in the Gutter,” in which the female partner of a male cross-dresser encourages his interest when he fears he’s crossed a line and doesn’t want to live in the new, judgmental world he’s stepped into. Aimee Pearl writes in “Meeting at the Hole in the Wall, “Chivalry is dead, and I want to writhe naked on its grave.”

These are celebratory, sexy stories, but, all apologies to Mr. Allen, they are more complex than a view of bisexuality simply as “twice as much” to offer. I like to think of them as both/and stories that, collectively, offer a look at the ways bisexuality, queerness and lesbianism affect us while recognizing that there’s no monolithic typical bisexual. We are multifaceted, full of desires that can’t be contained in a single, simplistic category. We are hungry, horny, mischievous, naughty, provocative and, yes, curious. We may think we know what we want, only to keep on surprising ourselves just when we think we have it all figured out. We are open to a wide range of sexual possibilities, whether they exist in our heads or beyond.

I hope you’ll enjoy the twenty-two stories presented here, and that they serve as erotic catalysts, no matter how you identify.

Rachel Kramer Bussel
New York City

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The chase in "Run, Baby, Run" by Vida Bailey from Serving Him

Writing "the chase" reminds me of Ms. Pac Man, but in this case, a kinky version of chasing, from the story "Run, Baby, Run" by Vida Bailey in Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission. If you like it, please like Serving Him on Amazon (yes, we got to 100, but I'd love to keep going). Previous excerpts: "The Letter" by Tiffany Reisz part 1 and part 2, "Under Direction" by Teresa Noelle Roberts, "Chattel" by Errica Liekos, "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright, "What You Deserve" by Lori Selke and "Subbing" by me.

BOGO special for pre-orders by January 31st: Pre-order the paperback version for only $9.99 (as of this posting) and I'll send you a free signed copy of any of these titles of mine: the Kindle or Nook edition of ebook Instruments of Pleasure: Sex Toy Erotica, or the paperback version of Passion, Irresistible, Only You, Going Down, Peep Show, Cheeky Spanking Stories or Suite Encounters. AND you'll also be entered to win a $50 gift card for every book you pre-order. I'm giving away a $50 gift card to one lucky reader who pre-orders the book by January 31st and sends their receipt by 3 am EST on February 1, 2013. Winner will be notified on February 2nd. Forward your or receipt to femalesubantho at with "Contest" in the subject line and tell me which free book you want, indicate who to make the book out to and where to send it (US only).

From "Run, Baby, Run" by Vida Bailey

Jay always gave her the key to the cuffs, and a fair chance. There was the tacit understanding that whoever got to them first got to use them on the other. In truth, Lana couldn’t really imagine what she’d do with Jason in cuffs, though sometimes her mind did slide to interesting possibilities. But not while she was running. Right now there was just the chase, and escape, and getting to the goal, and all the beautiful things that the safe fear did to her insides. Listening intently for breath, or footsteps, she craned around again, searching in the light spaces between the shadows for the cuffs. And then she saw them. They were hanging by a cord from their favorite tree, actually over her head, out over the path. Too high to stretch up to. She knew she could climb for them and reel them in, but she could also feel the hands that would grab her as soon as she tried to pull herself up into the tree. So, what—a run and jump? A stick? She’d be right out in the open. And why was he being so quiet? Was he waiting for her next move?

She decided to go for it. Swiveling around, she took a step out onto the path, and weighed up the distance out of the corner of her eye. A running jump should do it. Her eyes squinted, trying to pierce the darker shadows. She stood still, as her brain put puzzle pieces together, and she strangled a gasp as she realized that the darker shape in the shadow she was looking at was Jay. He was standing right there, a few feet away, looking at her! She froze. No point running now. Lead him away, double back? Ah, she knew there was no way out other than to act, to move.

She took a few steps backward, softly, so as not to startle him. Had he noticed her seeing the cuffs? She had to go now, before he moved, or she’d be out of space. She took a breath, two quick strides, and jumped, arms outstretched. She felt her fingers graze the soft leather of one dangling cuff, and then Jay’s hard body hit hers, a collision that flung her onto the soft layer of leaves and pine needles beneath her with a thud, knocking the air from her chest when she bounced between the ground and her husband. She writhed and gasped underneath him and tried to kick free, but she didn’t really get anywhere this time.

Jay laughed softly.

“Gotcha.” His lips moved against her ear as he whispered and the tip of his tongue traced a path up her neck and into her ear. He blew lightly on the wet trail of his saliva, and she shivered. The fight in her was always swallowed so quickly once he was back in control. Desire and deference were lit in its place. Jay peeled himself off her and pulled Lana to her knees.
If you liked this excerpt, please do like Serving Him on Amazon, pre-order and enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card by January 31st (see above), and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Get my sex toy erotica ebook for only $3.99...or free!

Just saw that my sex toy erotica ebook Instruments of Pleasure is on sale for Kindle for only $3.99! That's 39.9 cents a story. Woo-hoo! Want it free? I'll send you the Kindle or Nook version free if you pre-order Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission by January 31st (click here for your other BOGO options) and enter you to win a $50 Amazon gift card. If you've already read these stories and liked them, I'd love it if you'd like Instruments of Pleasure on Amazon. Thank you!

Here's the table of contents:

Like This Rachel Kramer Bussel

The London O Justine Elyot

Princess Elizabeth Coldwell

Strapped KD Grace

The Apiary Megan Butcher

Undercover Kink Louisa Harte

The Inner Vixen Saska Walker

A Girl, Two Guys, and a Sex Toy Kristina Wright

Getting It Right Teresa Noelle Roberts

The Spanking Machine by Rachel Kramer Bussel

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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Sweetening the pre-order pot: BOGO special through January 31st for Serivng Him

To celebrate Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission reaching 102 likes on Amazon (THANK YOU!!), I'm sweetening the deal on early pre-orders. Pre-order the paperback version for only $9.99 (as of this posting) and I'll send you a free signed copy of any of these titles of mine: the Kindle or Nook edition of ebook Instruments of Pleasure: Sex Toy Erotica, or the paperback version of Passion, Irresistible, Only You, Going Down, Peep Show, Cheeky Spanking Stories or Suite Encounters. AND you'll also be entered to win a $50 gift card for every book you pre-order. I'm giving away a $50 gift card to one lucky reader who pre-orders the book by January 31st and sends their receipt by 3 am EST on February 1, 2013. Winner will be notified on February 2nd. Forward your or receipt to femalesubantho at with "Contest" in the subject line and tell me which free book you want, indicate who to make the book out to and where to send it (US only). And yes, there WILL be Kindle and Nook editions and I'll post about them as soon as they are available for sale. And if you haven't liked the book on Amazon yet, every click counts (not sure if it has anything to do with it, but they've lowered the price from $10.41 to $9.99).

This is a great way to give someone a free signed book for Valentine's Day! I don't know exactly when Amazon will start shipping Serving Him, but I imagine in the second half of February. Thank you so much for your support and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

How to tell a potential lover you're kinky: "The Letter" by Tiffany Reisz

I'm treating you to a double dose of BDSM erotica today, with another excerpt, and this one's a two-fer, because this Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission excerpt is actually a sequel to the one "The Letter" author Tiffany Reisz posted on her blog, along with a great bit of backstory. In the comments there, I posted about the 20 copies of Serving Him I'll be sending out free to Amazon reviewers. Half of those have already been claimed, so get your requests in now if you want a free signed copy (must review on Amazon within 6 weeks of receipt, books will be sent in mid-February, US only). Email femalesubantho at with "Amazon" in the subject line and your name and mailing address. And of course, if you like it, please like Serving Him on Amazon! I'm 1 like away from 100 likes, as of this posting. Previous excerpts: "Under Direction" by Teresa Noelle Roberts, "Chattel" by Errica Liekos, "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright, "What You Deserve" by Lori Selke and "Subbing" by me.

First read the excerpt on Tiffany's blog, and then resume below.
Naked, she waited on the bed…knees to her chest, arms around her shins, head bowed and eyes closed. As instructed. As always. And as instructed she’d pulled her long hair into low pigtails that hung over her shoulders and tickled her collarbone. He seemed to love the combination of sweet and spice in her—her hair so girlishly arranged, her body naked, her eyes rimmed with black eyeliner in full Cleopatra mode. Anything he wanted she would do for him. She’d style her hair as he wanted, dress as he liked…anything for him. All it took was an order.

She stiffened slightly when she heard the bedroom door open. Closing her eyes tightly, she fought the need to look at him. God, she loved to look at him—at his black hair, slightly unruly, his bright blue eyes, the leather bracelet he wore along with his leather-banded watch. He’d always rolled his shirtsleeves to the elbows. Until Brice, she’d never realized how erotic male forearms could be.
If you liked this excerpt, please do like it on Amazon, enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card by pre-ordering by January 31st, and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Sex toy erotica with a twist: "Under Direction" by Teresa Noelle Roberts

I love erotica featuring sex toys and I love plot twists, and both are prominently featured in "Under Direction" by Teresa Noelle Roberts in Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission. Here's your latest excerpt. If you like it, please like Serving Him on Amazon! Previous excerpts: "Chattel" by Errica Liekos, "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright, "What You Deserve" by Lori Selke and "Subbing" by me.

From "Under Direction" by Teresa Noelle Roberts

The package was hefty for its size, and oddly shaped, wrapped in sleek, dark-red paper neatly enough that I suspected Luke hadn’t done it himself. “I brought you a present,” Luke said. “Actually it’s more I bought myself a present for you to use.”

The wording, and the fact it wasn’t near my birthday or any holiday, made me suspect a sex toy, or lingerie, or some other bit of erotically charged fun. I made quick work of that pretty wrapping.

But this toy wasn’t anything I expected.

“A Feeldoe?” I raised one eyebrow at the alarmingly turquoise contraption: two conjoined faux-cocks, one end to insert into me and the other, obviously, for someone else to enjoy. Turquoise is my favorite color, and it certainly looked like it would be fun in the right, meaning female, company, but I wasn’t seeing any immediate application.

“Who’s the lucky lady you imagine me using this with?” We were basically monogamous, but we’d never ruled out the possibility of adventure if the right opportunity arose. Maybe this was Luke’s not-too-subtle way of saying he’d found what might be the right opportunity. “Or is it more flexible than it looks? I’ll try anything once.”

Luke smiled one of those smiles that always wiped out some of my fears while firing up a new crop, much more fun than the originals. I felt a stirring in my groin. “No, girl. You’ll be using it on me.”
If you liked this excerpt, please do like it on Amazon, enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card by pre-ordering by January 31st, and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Monday, January 21, 2013


The February/March love and sex issue of BUST has an article called "The Thinking Girl's Guide to Erotica" by Rachel Friedman and here's part of what it says:
If you want to start boning up (har0 on quality erotica, you'll want to start with the work of some stellar modern female authors. Perhaps best known is Rachel Kramer Bussel, who edits and contributes to a slew of top-notch anthologies; aside from the Best Sex Writing series, she's worked on niche collections like Tasting Her: Oral Sex Stories; Please, Sir: Erotic Stories of Female Submission; and Suite Encounters: Hotel Sex Stories.
My fabulous publisher Cleis Press gets a big shoutout, as does ebook publisher Mischief Books. Yay!

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Have drinks and chat with me and Melissa Petro on February 13th

Writers Bloq has been kind enough to invite me to co-host this February 13th event along with Melissa Petro. Click through to their Facebook page to participate and get an invite. This will probably be my last New York City event before I move in May. I'll have a few books with me to sell, and am happy to sign any if you've got them. Looking forward to it! And if you're coming to the dinner, I will very likely have hot off the press copies of Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission with me and I'll be extra happy if you tell me you liked it on Amazon.

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BDSM erotica excerpt: "Chattel" by Errica Liekos

This excerpt from Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission is from the story "Chattel" by Errica Liekos. If you like it, please like Serving Him on Amazon! See previous excerpts: "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright, "What You Deserve" by Lori Selke and "Subbing" by me.

From "Chattel" by Errica Liekos

“Maybe I haven’t been making myself clear,” Alex said. “I let you go because I trust you to come back. Men like me don’t give away things they’re unsure of. But maybe you haven’t understood my confidence in you.”

“I…” Sasha started to speak, but Alex’s hand tightened behind her neck, and she stopped. He rubbed his five o’clock shadow against her throat then continued.

“I can see now that I made a mistake,” he said. “You don’t need your freedom, do you? You need to know you’re wanted. You need to know you’re loved.”

Sasha felt her legs go weak. She leaned on Alex, and he held her weight. There were no windows in their front hall. She opened and closed her eyes to the same solid black. “I’ll be clear from here on out. You’re mine. I own you. I tell you to spend time with your friends because it gives me pleasure to do so. Because I like you missing me, and I like it when you come home with new stories from your friends and your world to entertain me. I expect you to stay independent and entertaining to me. Do you understand?”

Sasha nodded.

“Because I have no interest in owning something weak and unchallenging, Sasha. I want you strong, and I want you to have your own interests.” Alex lowered his voice even more. “But you belong to me. Do you understand?”

Sasha nodded again.

“I’m not sure you do. Go into the living room. I’m going to show you.”
If you liked this excerpt, please do like it on Amazon, enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card by pre-ordering by January 31st, and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Sunday, January 20, 2013

BDSM and coffee in "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright

I'm dedicating this post to all the coffee drinkers out there, and to anyone who's ever had a dirty conversation in public! This excerpt from Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission is from the story "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright. If you like it, please like Serving Him on Amazon! See previous excerpts: "What You Deserve" by Lori Selke and "Subbing" by me.

From "The Coffee Break" by Kristina Wright

The phone rings as I pick it up to check it for the hundredth time in thirty minutes. I’m so startled, I drop the phone and it skitters across the slick tabletop. I catch it as it slides off the edge.

“Hello?” My voice is as breathless as he always says it is. It would piss me off if I weren’t so excited.

“Are you thinking about me fucking you?”

That’s what I love about him. There’s no preamble, no chitchat. He cuts right through the bullshit and gets to what he wants. What we both want.

I laugh, but it’s the kind of laughter that’s an escape valve for all of my pent-up frustrations and nervousness. “Something like that,” I say, conscious of the people around me.

“Tell me.”

Damn. I should have known he wouldn’t let me off the hook just because I’m in public. I cup my hand around the phone and whisper, “I’m thinking about you fucking me.”


I glance at the woman next to me, who is wearing ear buds and seems oblivious to my presence. “I’m thinking about you fucking me,” I say, louder this time.

Maybe too loud, because she glances over at me with a weird expression on her face. I turn my head to the wall, but the full-length mirror reflects the three tables of people behind me, not all of them wearing ear buds.

“Good girl,” he says, his voice silky smooth. He sounds like sex. He is sex. “I want you to go order a coffee.”

I look at the cup in front of me, nearly untouched. “I already have a coffee.” He makes a sound of impatience. I know that sound too well. It means I’ve displeased him. If he were here in person, there would be some punishment to go along with that sound. I can’t decide whether I wish he were here or not.

“I want you to order something specific,” he says. “A medium coffee with cream and two pumps of vanilla. Because you’re as far from vanilla as they come, aren’t you, Meredith?”

I nod, even though he can’t see me. There is nothing vanilla about me except the way I dress. I’m your typical coffee-shop freelancer, dressed for comfort, not for style. “Yes, Sir,” I say. “Then what?”

“You’ll know what to do. What’s your safeword, Meredith?”

“Latte,” I say. It was my choice of word—a tip of the hat to my love of coffee. “Will I need it?” I can’t imagine what he’s up to, but a shiver of anticipation tickles along my spine.

“I hope not.”
If you liked this excerpt, please do like it on Amazon, enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card by pre-ordering by January 31st, and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Saturday, January 19, 2013

Free BDSM erotica short story excerpt: "What You Deserve" by Lori Selke from Serving Him

Here's another free excerpt, this time from Lori Selke's opening story "What You Deserve" in Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission, following the excerpt of my story "Subbing." If you like this snippet, please do me a favor and go on over to Amazon and click "like" at the top of the page while signed in to your Amazon account. The book has 61 likes and I'm trying to get to 100 to show Amazon just how many BDSM erotica fans are out there. THANK YOU! And if you are hankering to write you own erotica and get published, see my calls for submissions for 1,200 word or less BDSM submission erotica and Best Bondage Erotica 2014, both with April 1st deadlines.

What You Deserve
by Lori Selke

He left me a voicemail message the morning of our date. “Tonight, my dear Deirdre,” he rumbled into the phone, “You’re going to get what you deserve.” He added a few details—a time for me to appear at his apartment, instructions to let myself in and read the note he will leave me on the dining room table, which will provide further guidance.

Jake and I had been dating long enough for me to not only have the key to his apartment but a small dresser drawer dedicated to my personal effects in his bedroom. We were an item. We only had eyes for each other. Our friends laughed admiringly at our continued chemistry.

If they only knew.

I wasn’t Jake’s full-time submissive. Neither of us were interested in that. But when we were together, the energy was undeniable. I wanted to please him, and he loved to put me though my paces. We’d figured out our mutual kinkiness early on and indulged it every chance we got. I’d worn a play collar for him once or twice—okay, a couple dozen times. He had toys he’d bought just to use them on me. A little trust game like this one was par for the course for us. Something not too heavy, but not entirely frivolous. Serious fun.

It was a journey we’d embarked upon together after one too many nights entangled together, whispering our sexual secrets to each other in the dark. Somehow it was always easier for me if I couldn’t see his face when I made my true confessions. He had noticed how turned on I got when he pulled my hair, yes he had. When he slapped my ass once or twice, or held my head down on his delectable cock. He liked to watch me blush when he trailed his fingers along my jawline. The rest felt as inevitable as gravity.

If I was ever supposed to be ashamed of my submissive desires for Jake, then I must have cut that class in school.

I rushed home after work and quickly showered and changed my clothes. Jake’s voicemail hadn’t left any specific instructions as to my attire.

So I dressed for myself. I put on a casual dress with a black crossover top and a pretty black and white graphic print skirt—it always made me feel like an old-time pre-Technicolor movie star. Black bra, black panties, bare legs, men’s-loafer-inspired pumps. Kind of like what I’d wear to the office, only a little bit funkier. Jake worked in customer support. He liked it partly because nobody ever saw his face—or his shoulder-length hair, or the tribal tattoos on his forearms, plus the one on the web between his left thumb and forefinger. He’d had a dissolute younger life that he’d only begun to divulge to me, but he reined it in when he started to go gray at the temples. Suddenly health insurance became a priority, too, and the debauchery could wait for the weekend.

Or nights when I slept over. Whatever worked.

I let myself into his apartment as instructed. And also as instructed, there was a note on his little two-person dining table, which was bare except for a slim little dog collar I was so very intimately acquainted with already, as well as a blindfold, one of those ruffled satin sleep mask styles. This one was pink. The note simply said, “Put these on.” So that’s what I did. First the collar, then the blindfold. Then I carefully perched on the edge of the dinette chair and waited.

He must have been waiting down the hall, perhaps in his bedroom; I heard his footfall on the carpet. He’d taken his shoes off. I straightened my back, hands in my lap, already squirming with anticipation. But instead of touching me or hearing his coarse whisper close to my ear, I heard the clanking of pots in the kitchen, then the gentle chink of china on the table next to me.

The first words he spoke to me were, “Open your mouth.” So I did. He slipped something inside it, to sit on my tongue. “Taste it,” he said. It was salty and tangy and sweet and creamy and chewy. Eventually the sensations sorted themselves out. Half a fig, stuffed with goat cheese and sprinkled with thyme and honey, he told me as I chewed. He gave me another. I licked leftover honey off his fingers.

He continued to feed me by hand—slivers of lemony roast chicken, slices of cheese, cubes of bread, olives, room-temperature cherry tomatoes that popped in my mouth. I tried not to giggle or bite the tips of his fingers, but it was hard. It was hard to hold still and let myself be fed. But when I got too fidgety, he just said, “If I have to, I’ll tie your hands behind your back.” I stopped fidgeting.

“Slow down,” he said again after a few more bites. “Savor it. We’ve got all night. Don’t worry, I guarantee you’re going to get what you deserve.”
If you liked this excerpt, please do like it on Amazon, enter to win a $50 Amazon gift card by pre-ordering by January 31st, and stay tuned for more excerpts!

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Friday, January 18, 2013

Link love: erotica, fetishes, Tar Baby and more

Some items to check out:

BDSM erotica author Tiffany Reisz (The Prince) offers erotica writing tips.

Fetishes 101 by Jessica Wakeman at The Frisky.

If you want to see a piece of theater that will keep you on the edge of your seat, make you laugh and squirm and think and feel, go see Tar Baby (closing January 19th) by Desiree Burch at D2 Theatre off Union Square.

Also if you're in NYC, my friend Twanna Hines is teaching a Skillshare class on "How to Make a Living as a Creative Professional."

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Help me get to 100 likes for Serving Him

I'm trying to get my book Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission up to 100 likes on Amazon (currently at 46) so if you're so inclined, would you please give it a click? I know you haven't read it yet, but I can promise you it's one of my hottest books yet. You can read more about it at

Here's a little teaser, and I think the rest of the story will be published next month, so I'll leave it at that, but if you like it, please stay tuned for more excerpts and help me out by liking it on Amazon. THANK YOU!

"Subbing" by Rachel Kramer Bussel from Serving Him.
“It’s just for a day,” Jesse wheedled, begging her best friend, Taylor, to fill in for her on the job. “And you’re already kinky,” she added, like that sealed the deal, like Taylor would want to spend her Saturday bending over to get spanked and pretending to drool over some guy she wasn’t interested in. It was true, she was kinky, not to mention single, but even though they were best friends, Jesse didn’t know everything that Taylor was into. She didn’t know how much Taylor had loved it when her ex, Brian, choked her, his big meaty hand wrapped around her slender neck while one leg pinned her down and his fingers pressed deep inside her. Jesse definitely didn’t know how much Taylor liked it when Brian had called her a slut and “threatened” to bring his friends over to fill all her holes and cover her in come. The dirtier the talk, the harder she’d come. But that was with Brian, not some stranger, even though, she had to admit, when Brian had teased her with the idea of being his whore, getting paid to service his friends, she’d practically crushed the fingers he’d been fucking her with.

In the end, it wasn’t the excitement that made Taylor say yes, but the fact that, even more than she was a bad girl, she was a good girl. She knew Jesse would’ve done anything for her, and she couldn’t refuse this rare favor. If she’d fill in for a friend working a cash register or serving as a teaching assistant, her other closest friends’ current jobs, she couldn’t refuse to get fucked for cash. Well, not fucked, Jesse clarified. “No sex,” she said, either ignoring or not seeing Taylor’s slight slump of disappointment. Wasn’t getting fucked the best part, the icing on the kinky cake?

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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Call for Submissions: short short BDSM submission erotica

To get a feel for the types of BDSM stories I'm looking for, see my books with a submissive POV such as Please, Sir; Yes, Sir; Please, Ma'am and Yes, Ma'am. For me the biggest challenge with editing 69 stories around a single topic is diversity in all sense of the word, so give me a range of characters, POVs (I welcome first, second and third person stories), settings, scenarios, motivations, experience levels, motivations, BDSM practices (which can be combined with other sexual acts), fetishes, couplings, relationships (yes, repeating this from the guidelines below, but it's the thing that makes or breaks a book like this, in my opinion, and as an editor I love having 3 times the room as I normally would in a given anthology to publish more authors and provide more of a range of storytelling and scenarios). This will be my third time working with such a large number of authors; I'm thrilled with how beautiful a book Gotta Have It: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex is, inside and outside, and the next one, about orgasms, will be out later this year. So whether you read Fifty Shades of Grey and were inspired to write your own submissive hero or heroine or couple or other permutation or are an old hat at erotica, I look forward to reading your stories. This is also an excellent opportunity for new authors (new to erotica and/or my books) to try their hand at erotica, since I have space for 69 stories. Looking forward to reading! READ AND FOLLOW THE GUIDELINES. That is the first and, dare I say, very best way to get your story included in any of my books! For those new to erotica, I strongly encourage you to submit to this anthology if it seems up your alley. Questions? Email shortsubmissionantho at after you've read the guidelines!

Short Short BDSM Submission Erotica Anthology (title TBA)
Editor: Rachel Kramer Bussel
Publisher: Cleis Press
Deadline: April 1, 2013 (earlier stories strongly preferred and encouraged)
Email address: shortsubmissionantho at Payment: $20 and 1 copy of the book on publication

Please make sure to read and follow these guidelines in order for your work to be considered. Editor Rachel Kramer Bussel is looking for short short stories of 1,200 words or less focused on the theme of BDSM from a submissive perspective. While the word count is short, I want complex stories with a beginning, middle and end, not simply scene snippets. I will consider stories from a dominant's perspective if that is the best way to illuminate the mindset of the submissive. The final book of 69 stories will contain an extremely wide variety of characters, POVs (I welcome first, second and third person stories), settings, scenarios, motivations, experience levels, motivations, BDSM practices (which can be combined with other sexual acts), fetishes, couplings, relationships, etc. All genders and sexual orientations welcome. All characters must be over 18; no nonconsensual activity, scat, incest or bestiality. No poetry. Original, unpublished stories only. Stories from authors I have not published before are especially welcome. See my books Please, Sir; Yes, Sir; Please, Ma'am and Yes, Ma'am to get a feel for the types of submissive stories I enjoy. See Gotta Have It: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex for examples of 1,200 word or less erotic stories.

How to submit: Send double spaced Times or Times New Roman 12 point black font Word document (.doc or .docx) with pages numbered OR RTF of 1,200 words MAXIMUM to shortsubmissionantho at DO NOT submit multiple versions of your story; submit ONLY your final, complete, edited version of the story. Note that this is a hard maximum. Stories that are not in keeping with the theme of the anthology or are over 1,200 words will not be considered. Indent the first line of each paragraph half an inch and double space (regular double spacing, do not add extra lines between paragraphs or do any other irregular spacing). US grammar (double quotation marks around dialogue, etc.) required. I will consider a maximum of TWO stories per author. Include your legal name (and pseudonym if applicable), mailing address. If you are using a pseudonym, please provide your real name and pseudonym and make it clear which one you’d like to be credited as. You will receive a confirmation within 72 hours. I will get back to you by September 2013.

Payment: $20 and 1 copy of the book on publication in 2014

Deadline: April 1, 2013 (earlier submissions encouraged and preferred)

Monday, January 14, 2013

Call for Submissions: Best Bondage Erotica 2014

Please read the guidelines in full (pretty much the first rule of doing anything, writing or otherwise, but it needs to be stated because almost all the questions I get asked are right there in my guidelines). Looking forward to reading your stories! And like it says below, ONLY SEND ONE FINAL, EDITED VERSION OF YOUR STORY. I'd rather get the best/finished version later than an earlier version followed by umpteen iterations, trust me. I'll risk sounding like a bitch to make the point.

Call for Submissions
Best Bondage Erotica 2014

Best Bondage Erotica 2014 will collect the best bondage erotica stories around, focusing on a range of techniques, implements, characters and scenarios, from newbies to seasoned bondage players and everything in between. Bondage should be a central focus of the erotic element of the story but the plot does not have to hinge on bondage. The final book will include stories focused on both the physical and mental aspects of bondage, from varying points of view. Bondage plus other sexual activity is welcome (spanking, tickling, exhibitionism, voyeurism, intercourse, oral sex, teasing, etc.). Original, unique, creative characters, settings, scenarios and forms of bondage are encouraged. As befitting the title, I’m looking for the best, hottest, most creative bondage erotica for this collection. All genders/sexual orientations welcome. No poetry.

Original stories strongly preferred, but reprints of work published (or slated to be published) between September 2012 and November 2013 will be considered but will be given lower priority than original work and author MUST include original publication information and retain reprint rights. All characters must be over 18; no incest or bestiality. Please see Best Bondage Erotica 2011, 2012 and 2013 or my other kinky Cleis Press anthologies (Anything for You, Cheeky Spanking Stories, Bottoms Up, Spanked, Yes, Sir, Yes, Ma’am, He’s on Top, She’s on Top) for an idea of the kinds of stories I prefer. I will consider up to two stories per author.

How to submit: Send double spaced Times or Times New Roman 12 point black font Word document with pages numbered (.doc, not .docx) OR RTF of 1,500-4,000 word story. Indent the first line of each paragraph half an inch and double space (regular double spacing, do not add extra lines between paragraphs or do any other irregular spacing). US grammar (double quotation marks around dialogue, etc.) required. Only submit your final, best version of the story you are submitting. Do not send multiple versions of the same story. Include your legal name (and pseudonym if applicable), mailing address, and 50 word or less bio in the third person to If you are using a pseudonym, please provide your real name as well as your pseudonym and make it clear which one you’d like to be credited as. You will receive a confirmation within 72 hours. I will get back to you by September 2013. I cannot give any feedback on rejected submissions.

Payment: $50 and 2 copies of the book on publication

Deadline: April 1, 2013 (earlier submissions strongly encouraged)

I’ve been seeing numerous recent submissions that do not conform to my guidelines. They are there for a reason. Please read and follow them. If you have any questions, please contact me at bestbondage2014 at

About the editor: Rachel Kramer Bussel ( is the editor of over 40 anthologies, including Best Bondage Erotica 2011 and 2012, Irresistible, Gotta Have It, Women in Lust Orgasmic, Fast Girls, Passion, Peep Show, Bottoms Up, Spanked, The Mile High Club, Do Not Disturb, He’s on Top, She’s on Top, Tasting Him, Tasting Her, Crossdressing, Dirty Girls, and is Best Sex Writing Series Editor. Her writing has been published in over 100 anthologies, including Susie Bright’s X: The Erotic Treasury, Best American Erotica 2004 and 2006, and Zane’s Purple Panties and the New York Times bestseller Succulent: Chocolate Flava II. She has written for Buzzfeed Shift, Cosmopolitan, The Daily Beast, Fresh Yarn, The Frisky, Glamour, Inked, Mediabistro, Newsday, New York Post, Penthouse, The Root, Salon, Time Out New York, xoJane, Zink and other publications.

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Saturday, January 12, 2013

Win a $50 Amazon gift card by pre-ordering Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission

I'm very excited that Serving Him: Sexy Stories of Submission will be out in February; you'll see it on tables at Barnes & Noble! It contains what I believe might be my dirtiest (for lack of a better word) story, called "Subbing," about a woman who fills in as a professional submissive, and 21 other BDSM tales that I know many of you will enjoy. To celebrate, I'm giving away a $50 gift card to one lucky reader who pre-orders the book by January 31st and sends their receipt by 3 am EST on February 1, 2013. Winner will be notified on February 2nd. To enter, pre-order the paperback for $10.41 on Amazon or $10.20 at and forward your receipt to femalesubantho at with "Contest" in the subject line. Why am I doing this? Because pre-orders help booksellers know how popular a book will be, and I'm pretty sure that post-Fifty Shades of Grey, many readers are looking for the next hot female submission read. There will be an e-book version and I will link to it once it's available, but this contest runs through January 31st. If you have a spare moment, please do me a favor and click "like" on Serving Him on Amazon. Thank you!

Introduction: Lucky Naughty Girls (see below)

What You Deserve Lori Selke
Coffee Break Kristina Wright
Chattel Errica Liekos
Under Direction Teresa Noelle Roberts
The Letter Tiffany Reisz
Run, Baby, Run Vida Bailey
Tackling Jessica Maxine Marsh
Safe, Sane and Consensual Ariel Graham
The Golden Ruler Giselle Renarde
I Always Do Kiki DeLovely
Pinky Kissa Starling
The Breaking Point Cole Riley
Shining in the Dark Bex vanKoot
Room #3 Emily Bingham
Duo J. Sinclaire
Breath Mollena Williams
Silver Fish in the Crystal Pool Gina Marie
The Secret of Time Travel Jacqueline Applebee
Bared Gray Miller
In His Control Jade Melisande
Paper Doll joy
Subbing Rachel Kramer Bussel

Lucky Naughty Girls

“I’m so lucky to have such a naughty girl like you in my lap,” Jake tells Deirdre in “What You Deserve” by Lori Selke, the opening story in the book you’re about to read. In many ways, that sentence, its promise and passion, its claim and command, is what this book of kinky erotica is all about. There are a lot of naughty girls, a lot of laps and a lot of men who understand that, in fact, they are lucky—whether they ever voice it or not—to have a hot, eager, filthy-minded woman eagerly awaiting the chance to serve them.

The other half of the equation, one that is vital to any BDSM story, but especially those told with an eye toward female submission, is that the naughty girls themselves know how lucky they are—and if they don’t at the start of the story, they do by the end. They know they are lucky to have discovered a seed of submission somewhere within them and someone to complement and nurture that growing seed. They are lucky because they own their darkest, dirtiest desires, even the ones they struggle with, the ones that turn them on despite being taboo or unnerving in some way.

Actually, they are more than lucky; finding a master, a top, a boyfriend, a husband, a lover or simply a man who gets an essential truth about their submissive nature doesn’t just happen. Well, sometimes it does, but I believe it takes a certain kind of prowess to activate and draw forth those kinds of dominants, the kind you can trust with your body and soul, your pussy and your power. What I’m trying to say is that the women here don’t just wander down an alley and find a man to pin them against the wall; even when they encounter a sexy stranger, they are making a choice to obey him, to follow their own lust as much as another’s command.

In “Room #3,” when author Emily Bingham shuts the door on her characters, she invites us into a tale where we don’t know who is touching the narrator, nor does she; we only know how much she likes it. When the narrator offers up her body, she enters into the unknown, a thrill in and of itself. “The moment I knocked on this door, I consented to become his plaything. From here on out I have no say in what will happen. No words are to leave my mouth in this space; I am at his mercy. I can only hope I’ve made a wise choice.” In all the stories you will read here, a woman makes a similar choice, and we get to luxuriate in the ways that actively making that choice, owning up to our most dastardly, wanton, wicked fantasies can be a ticket to a ride we never want to get off.

I’m sitting in a coffee shop in San Francisco as I quote from Kristina Wright’s “Coffee Break,” wondering what I would do if a hot barista said to me, “Go to the bathroom now. Leave the door unlocked. Get undressed. Kneel on the floor facing the door.” Actually, it’s not the barista who delivers that message in her story, but it made me picture what I would do if I were handed a steaming cup of joe and such a command.

The stories in Serving Him are about everything from scenes in dungeons to the ways playing with power can extend beyond what we do when we are “playing.” In “Safe, Sane and Consensual,” by Ariel Graham, she takes that hallmark of BDSM safety and reflects on the ways we “safeword” when dealing with polite society. “May I ask what the spanking is for?” Aaron asks Annie, and his answer just may surprise you. There are plenty of surprises in store in this book, and whether you’re a novice or a seasoned BDSM player, I hope you’ll enjoy the exchanges to be found here—of dirty talk, power, roles, toys, games. These characters test each other, pushing boundaries from both sides of the top/bottom equation. Often it’s the women who push their men to push them, to stop being polite and start holding them down, making them open wide, forcing them to relinquish a kind of power they are eager to let go off.

Many of the stories here are as intense as the acts described; I see them as tender, but they are likely to take your breath away, make you tremble or quiver, make you just a little bit afraid. That edge of awe and fear, of want and need, of excitement and surrender, is just where I hope these stories keep you. You don’t have to be a naughty girl (or boy), in real life or in your dreams, to enjoy the twenty-two hot stories in this book, but I have a feeling they will bring out your inner naughtiness, whatever form that takes. I feel lucky to get to share them with you.

Rachel Kramer Bussel
New York City

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Thursday, January 10, 2013

My only reading of 2013 is March 16th

I think it's pretty safe to say the only reading I will be organizing this year is the one at CatalystCon on March 16th in Arlington, Virginia, so I hope you can make it! I'll be focusing my efforts on writing and editing instead of events, save for college speaking gigs (first one of 2013 is next month, I get to teach erotica and hopefully discover some new writers). Many plots and plans and dreams in the works, and I hope I will have some calls for submission and news to share soon. In the meantime, if you're coming to Catalyst, please join me and many other fabulous readers for erotica, spoken word, poetry and more.

7 course cozy murder mystery meal article at Bookish

I wrote my first piece for Bookish about cozy food mysteries (or should that be food cozy mysteries?) and walk you through a murder mystery dinner in seven courses, including wine, cheese, soup, steak, mashed potatoes, cupcakes and coffee! The piece didn't include the book covers so I'm including them below, with links to Amazon paperback and Kindle (yes, I do get a small cut if you buy books through my links, and greatly appreciate all of you who have, but I also recommend checking out cozies at your local library, as I often do). If you like the article, I'd love it if you'd click "like" at the bottom and/or pass it on. Thanks for reading! Some corrections are in the works and these are the book titles I was writing about, but I wanted to post now while I have a moment, lots of catching up to do this week.

How to Dine on Killer Wine
(Kindle edition)

Clobbered by Camembert
(Kindle edition)

A Spoonful of Murder
(Kindle edition)

Affairs of Steak
(Kindle edition)

If Mashed Potatoes Could Dance
(Kindle edition)

Red Velvet Revenge
(Kindle edition)

A Brew to a Kill
(Kindle edition)

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Wednesday, January 09, 2013

My grandmother, the mall rat

I remembered I'd written this in 2009, and it never got published. I am still pretty sad but doing better, and very grateful to hear from so many people whose lives she touched. We actually would have gone to the mall and told the people she knew there but we don't know their names! If you want to know why I ate at Shake Shack in Dubai, here's a clue.

My Grandmother, The Mall Rat
by Rachel Kramer Bussel

Growing up in suburban New Jersey, the local malls were my refuge. Getting top billing was Garden State Plaza, which is now populated by the likes of Betsey Johnson and BCBG, but back then featured more garden-variety shops. Paramus Park and Riverside Square were second-tier, but still worthy of a visit if that was the only place we could get a ride to. The mall was an escape, a place to explore, whether that meant trying on clothes or surreptitiously ogling dirty books. An afternoon at the mall was the epitome of teenage freedom, and I must admit that when I moved to Berkeley, California for college, and after that, Manhattan for law school, I missed my malls (yes, Manhattan has a mall, but it’s just not the same).

These days, I don’t frequent malls too often, though when I do, such as a recent walk through LA’s The Beverly Center, I can feel the fond memories rushing back (though I don’t recall a Hunky Santa photo booth back home!). I always credited my love of malls to my fate growing up a suburban teen rather than the much cooler city kids, but I realized recently I may have developed my love of mall culture from my 86-year-old grandmother (it definitely skipped over my mom). She and her friends get the Danbury (Connecticut) Mall to open early at 7 a.m. so they can walk its three floors before the crowds rush in, my grandmother using her stylish red walker to stroll (and hand bags from). She knows every inch of it, tracking its changes with as much zeal as any marketer. It’s as familiar a setting as her neighbors’ houses, and she shows as much interest in what’s new at the mall as she does with what’s new at her temple. If I were describing a friend, I’d think that a sad commentary on their materialism, but for my grandmother, the mall is a social venue par excellence. I recently found myself in a McDonald’s, somewhere I rarely go, but not for the food. I was there to buy a gift card for my grandmother; she goes there almost every day, and swears by the yogurt parfait. In fact, it’s pretty tough to refuse one of the many leftover yogurt parfaits that fill her refrigerator. The last time I saw her, we, along with my mom and stepfather, went to McDonald’s for breakfast and my ordering a breakfast burrito made her so happy you’d have thought I was being bat mitzvahed all over again. A 79-year-old man even asked her to share his hash browns recently; who knew that fast food joints were elderly pickup spots? (For the record, she did not give him her number.) As I knew she would, she went to McDonald’s the next day and proudly used the card, as excited as if I’d given her something far more extravagant.

It’s not just McDonald’s my grandmother loves about her local; it’s everything. Unlike my teenage mall shopping, for my grandmother, the mall is less about spending money and more about being social. She greets the staff at the stalls, shops, McDonald’s, Häagen-Dazs and Sbarro as if they were old friends. They know her by name. Walking around with her there is like being with a celebrity. She comments on any new store openings as casually as she fills me in on the latest family news (if you want to know who’s in therapy, who’s pregnant, who just bought a house and what someone just ate for dinner, my grandmother’s the one to call). When I visited her one Black Friday, we strolled every inch of the mall, her with her stylish red walker. While I went to the Apple Store to check my email, she sat in her walker and waited patiently. She insisted I try the $1 vibrating chairs and she was right--they really do feel good! She goes to the same newsstand to get her daily newspapers (“I’d die without The New York Times to read”) and is up on all the latest sales. I recently got berated for not letting her know which style of underwear I wanted from Victoria’s Secret.

My grandmother’s always been cool. She once dyed my hair Manic Panic purple, has probably been to more of the latest movies than you have, and saw the Beatles in concert. She remembers my favorite bands and will cut out articles about them for me. I recently saw some old footage of us dancing around; I was around 8, she fifty years my senior. She looked so young and glam, but what’s remarkable about her is that she still exhibits those qualities. Yes, she’s older and can’t be as active as she’d like; the years are catching up to her, as are various health ailments, like asthma. That hasn’t stopped her from making the most of the mobility she does have; she’s hard to get a hold of, and I have to strategically plan my calls to her in the evenings because during the day she’s out and about.

I admit that I love to shop, though whether that comes from being a Jersey girl, my grandmother’s daughter, or simply my own inner materialism, I’m not sure. Yet my passion for malls has waned over the years; I’m much more likely to shop online or at a flea market. I like getting to know the people who make my favorite possessions, like Kirsten Goede, creator of jewelry business Objets d’Envy, where I’m a frequent customer. When I was in Chicago earlier this year, I got to chat with her in person about art and business, and that made me more inclined to purchase her crystal bracelets and necklaces.

For my grandmother, though, the mall is not a symbol of crass commercialism. It’s just as homegrown and friendly as my chat with Kirsten. Buying things isn’t incidental, but it’s about the transaction as much as the end result. She’ll get gifts for family members knowing she may have to return them, and not minding one bit; after all, she’ll be back at the mall anyway making her rounds soon enough. I don’t necessarily aspire to her level of mall-hopping, but I admire her joie de vivre. Too bad she’s going to miss the Hunky Santa at the Beverly Center. I bet she’d look smashing next to him.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Free audiobook from Audible - try my erotica anthologies!

This post is now updated with all my latest Audible audiobooks, and I will keep adding to it as more are added, which seems to be at least every month, often multiple books a month! Click here to use your account to get a free Audible audiobook. Below are some suggestions of my erotica and Best Sex Writing series you can listen to, and more audiobook erotica is on the way! Here's one handy link for all my Audible audiobook erotica.

Only You: Erotic Romance for Women

Surrender: Erotic Tales of Female Pleasure and Submission

Gotta Have It: 69 Stories of Sudden Sex

Please, Sir: Erotic Stories of Female Submission

Yes, Ma'am: Erotic Stories of Male Submission

Going Down: Oral Sex Stories

Crossdressing: Erotic Stories

Tasting Him: Oral Sex Stories

Dirty Girls

Curvy Girls

Do Not Disturb: Hotel Sex Stories

The Mile High Club: Plane Sex Stories

Orgasmic: Erotica for Women

Fast Girls

Smooth: Erotic Stories for Women
(stories about nudity)

Passion: Erotic Romance for Women

Obsessed: Erotic Romance for Women

Best Bondage Erotica 2011

Spanked: Red-Cheeked Erotica

Bottoms Up: Spanking Good Stories

He's on Top: Erotic Stories of Male Dominance and Female Submission

She's on Top: Erotic Stories of Female Dominance and Male Submission

Peep Show: Tales of Voyeurs and Exhibitionists

Caught Looking: Erotic Tales of Voyeurs and Exhibitionists

Best Sex Writing 2009

Best Sex Writing 2010

Best Sex Writing 2012: The State of Today's Sexual Culture

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Wishing and hoping

I promised myself that in 2013, my social media usage would be, on the whole, more positive than it has been, probably ever. I want to use it to share news about books and plays and cities and people I love. But I've already come up against a wall, which is part of what I struggle with in this time of "figuring out what I want to do now that I'm grown up." Some days I so wish I had what felt more like a real, steady job, one that, yes, I would have to wake up early and commute to, but where I would have detailed assignments, a boss, a steady paycheck. Do I really want those things? If given a dream job, yes, but I love the freedom of freelancing, except when I hit that voice that tells me all those negative things I cannot fathom even writing another word.

I had my first big cry of 2013 last night, and it really wasn't that big, but the topic was: moving. Uprooting is not something I do easily. I'm a very status quo, change-hating person, on the whole. I love my routines, my safety, my stuff; they are all tied together. To talk about uprooting them for something utterly unknown is damn scary. To go somewhere where public transportation is probably minimal is not my ideal living environment, but I also know that I've been wanting a change for a while. So I have a lot of big decisions to make, and probably a lot of holing up and simply dealing to do, reckoning, facing the mess, head on, grappling with what's most important, all the while trying to hold on to this increasingly precarious business of making a living. I guess I always assumed that the farther along I got, the easier it would be, and I've found exactly the opposite. Some days I feel fired up to face those things, and some days I want to, and do, just give up. I feel ashamed that it's only January 3rd and already that's how I'm feeling, sure that anything I try will fail, but I also know that the perfect is the enemy of the good, and a book with The End is better than no book at all. That's what I'm telling myself, anyway, as I push through to turn in the last two books I'm contracted for, and hope there will be more, and hope that if the universe deems me so lucky, I'm up for the task.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

My first byline of 2013: "Loving Your Body, Even When You Don't"

I wrote about attending a Loving The Body You're In workshop taught by burlesque performers World Famous *BOB* and Legs Malone. It was a challenging piece to write so I'm proud of myself for remembering something I forgot a lot in 2012, and pretty much my entire life: the perfect is the enemy of the good. That applies equally to body image as writing. Even as I strive to both make a living and be a smarter businesswoman (and not just as president of RKB Enterprises, Inc.), I know that my job is to continually push myself, each and every day, and accept my flaws and failings. It's a huge tension in every area of my life, but something I endeavor to work on to the best of my ability.

What I'm trying to say is this isn't my best piece of writing, though surely it's not my worst, but I'm proud of it anyway. Sometimes writing is the hardest thing in the world for me, and sometimes it's the only thing I know how to do; often, it's both at once, and I hope this is the year I can finally be at peace with that tension, to love and learn from the rejections, of which there are and will be many, as much as the pieces that find a home. They all have a home, on my laptop, and now that I am a businesswoman in the sense of living off my words, I have to prioritize the words that sell, but to be comfortable with myself, those can't be the only ones that matter. That's something I will probably wrestle with as much as I do all the ills I see when I look in the mirror, but I want to be a better student this year. Not a resolution, per se, just a way of appreciating every lesson that comes my way, and being open to new possibilities.

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